Hailed for his “exquisite artistry”, “stunning interpretations” and “flawless performances”, New-Zealand-born bassoonist Michael Burns enjoys a multi-faceted career as a performer, teacher and composer. He is Professor of bassoon at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and is a Yamaha Performing Artist. He has recorded for the Centaur, CAP, Telarc, EMI, Klavier, and Mark labels and his solo CD Primavera: Music for Bassoon and Piano by Bassoonists was released in 2009 on the Mark Masters label to critical acclaim. He currently performs as a soloist, in chamber groups, and orchestrally. He has numerous recent performances at International Double Reed Society conventions, recitals and master classes throughout North America, Germany, China Italy and the South Pacific. He serves as principal bassoon with the Asheville Symphony, the North Carolina Opera Company and as bassoonist in the EastWind Ensemble, the Blue Mountain Ensemble, and Forecast Music. He also performs regularly with the North Carolina, and Greensboro Symphonies and as a guest with the Ciompi Quartet and Mallarme Chamber Players. His students have earned positions on the faculties of some of the leading universities in the U.S. and won prestigious competitions such as the Meg Quigley Vivaldi and the Yamaha Young Performing Artist competitions. In summers, Burns has been associated with the InterHarmony International Music Festival in Tuscany, Italy, the Eastern Music Festival the Music For All/Bands of America Summer Symposiums, New England Music Camp, and the Affetti Music Festival in Alaska. Burns is also a composer with many works published by TrevCo Music, Potenza Music and Effiny Music and performed internationally. For more information please visit: www.michaelburnsbassoon.com
In addition to playing regularly with orchestras throughout the Southeast, bassoonist Joy Hoffman is a doctoral candidate in bassoon performance at the University of Georgia Hugh Hodgson School of Music, where she was a finalist in the 2017 Hodgson Wind Ensemble Concerto Competition and played in the Southern Wind graduate woodwind quintet from 2016-2018. At the age of seventeen, she gave her solo debut on National Public Radio’s program, "From the Top," and also gave a solo performance with the United States Navy Band. Joy graduated summa cum laude in bassoon performance from both Florida State University (B.M., 2009), and University of Maryland (M.M., 2011). She held an adjunct music teaching position with Pensacola State College from 2012-2014, where she taught applied lessons, various music courses, and performed with the faculty woodwind quintet. Ms. Joy teaches private lessons through Augusta University’s Music Conservatory Program.
RUTH SHELLY UNGER, DMA
Shelly Unger is a freelance bassoonist and contrabassoonist as well as an artist affiliate bassoon instructor at Emory University. She earned her bachelor’s degree from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, master’s degree from Rice University Shepherd School of Music and DMA from the University of Georgia Hugh Hodgson School of Music. Her major teachers include Sidney Rosenberg, Benjamin Kamins, Bernard H. Garfield as well as longtime mentor/colleague Carl Nitchie, retired Atlanta Symphony Orchestra principal bassoonist. Dr. Unger is the founding director of Summer Bassoon Extravaganza. She has presented and performed at multiple International Double Reed Society Conferences, including a performance of Bernard Garfield’s second quartet. Most recently she served as Director of the 2016 IDRS Teen Camp: Double Reeds Rock! Dr. Unger plays in metro Atlanta, with the Augusta Symphony Orchestra, in regional orchestras throughout the Southeast, and on occasion with the Atlanta Symphony. Dr. Unger maintains a large private studio. Her students have received scholarships to prestigious music schools and conservatories, and several have won the From the Top Kent Cooke Award, giving them national exposure playing live on NPR as well as a $10,000 scholarship. In 2004-05 she was visiting professor of bassoon at the University of Missouri-Columbia, where she played with the Missouri Quintet. She has performed in South Korea, Lithuania, Taiwan and Israel. She plays a Moosmann bassoon.